Drug Classes That Can Help With Chronic Pain
Pain management can be a struggle, especially when it comes to chronic conditions. This is one reason why opiate pain killers are used so heavily to control pain. However, you should know that there are some other kinds of medications that can help you manage your discomfort. And, these are often safer and less habit-forming than opioids. Keep reading to learn a little bit about them.
Chronic pain and depression go hand in hand. Depression can be caused by chronic pain and pain is often worsened by depression as well. This is due to the neurotransmitters that are involved in the development of depression and chronic pain. Specifically, norepinephrine is highly involved.
So, an antidepressant can help to reduce your pain symptoms and SSNRIs are often prescribed for this. Your doctor may decide on SSRI or tricyclic medications instead, so speak with your physician about your options.
When starting your antidepressant, you should keep in mind that symptom relief may take some time. You also may experience a gradual reduction in pain, so you should wait at least six weeks to decide if the medication is working well for you.
In most cases, low doses of antidepressants can be prescribed, but if the initial starting dose does not work, then it can be increased. This is also true if your pain increases or if the antidepressant no longer seems to work as well the longer you take it.
There are a wide variety of medical conditions that involve the nervous system. And, many of these conditions can be treated with similar medications that act directly on the nervous system. So, if you have a pain condition that involves nerve damage, then you can sometimes be treated with medications used to treat seizures.
Anti-convulsant medicines work to reduce neural and nerve activity in the body. This essentially calms down the central and peripheral nervous systems so that electrical impulses are not as strong and numerous. When it comes to nerves, this translates to reduced numbness, tingling, and pain sensations.
Anti-convulsants are often used for conditions like diabetic neuropathy and other nerve issues that affect the feet, hands, and legs. And, if the pain is severe, the medication is a good adjunctive treatment used with nerve blocks.
If you want to know about other classes of medication that can assist you with your chronic pain, speak with someone that specializes in pain management treatment.